Ruling on ‘trusted’ status of TripAdvisor reviews welcomed

Credits: Irishtimes.com By: CONOR POPE, Consumer Affairs Correspondent

'THE IRISH Hotels Federation has welcomed a ruling published by the British Advertising Standards Authority this morning which prohibits travel website TripAdvisor from claiming or even implying the hotel reviews it carries are “honest, real or trusted”.

The federation also called on all travel review websites to “put in place the necessary safeguards to ensure reviews posted online are transparent and independent” so consumers could make informed decisions when booking accommodation.

The federation issued its statement ahead of a ruling from the authority published this morning after a six-month investigation into TripAdvisor instigated after a complaint by KwikChex, an online reputation management company which represents 2,000 British hotels.

Federation president Paul Gallagher said he welcomed the ruling “insofar as it goes some way to putting in place a structure which means consumers can trust reviews”.

While he described TripAdvisor as “a game changer” which had had “a very positive impact on the travel sector as was shown by its ranking of three Irish hotels in its top 25 hotels in the world last month”, he said unverified negative reviews on the site had the “potential to do a lot of damage” to a hotel.'

Above excerpts and read the full article on www.irishtimes.com

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